Insights Daily Current Events, 07 July 2015
Unwed mother can be sole guardian: SC
In a landmark judgment, the Supreme Court recently said that an unwed mother in India can become the sole legal guardian of a child without the consent of the father. Hence, now an unwed mother can apply for sole guardianship over her minor son without prior consent of the child’s absentee biological father.
Important observations made by the court:
- In situations where the father has not exhibited any concern for his offspring, giving him legal recognition would be an exercise in futility.
- In today’s society, where women are increasingly choosing to raise their children alone, we see no purpose in imposing an unwilling and unconcerned father on an otherwise viable family nucleus.
- A man who has chosen to forsake his duties and responsibilities is not a necessary constituent for the well-being of the child.
- It is necessary to protect the child from social stigma. But it is equally important to protect the unmarried mother’s fundamental right by not forcing her to disclose the name and particulars of her child’s father.
The order came on a plea by a Christian woman, who had challenged orders passed by a trial court and Delhi high court. Both had directed her to reveal the name of her child’s father when she sought guardianship of the child to make him nominee to her property. The child, born in 2010, was raised by the woman without any assistance from his biological father.
Sources: The Hindu.
Controversial Meiji sites get world heritage status
The UN’s cultural body recently conferred world heritage status on a number of new sites including some seen as representative of Japan’s industrial revolution, as South Korea lifted its opposition to the listing.
- UNESCO’s World Heritage committee added 23 sites considered representative of Japan’s industrial revolution under Emperor Meiji (1868-1910) to its vaunted list.
- The 23 Meiji period (1868-1912) sites include coalmines and shipyards that Japan says contributed to its transformation from feudalism into a successful modern economy.
- Japan is celebrating the sites’ inclusion, which is expected to boost tourism and opens up sources of funding for preservation work.
- Inclusion on UNESCO’s World Heritage list can bring economic benefits, because as well as being a powerful tourist draw, world heritage sites are eligible for financial assistance towards preservation.
South Korea had, in the past, opposed the application for world heritage status unless clear reference was made to the use of an estimated 60,000 labourers forced to work at seven of the sites, including the island coalmine Gunkanjima, during Japan’s 1910-1945 colonial rule over the Korean peninsula.
The period from 1868 until 1912 in Japan is called the Meiji era – after the name chosen by the young prince Mutsuhito, when he followed his father to the throne. Meiji means in Japanese ‘the enlightened rule’. During the Meiji period Japan underwent a stunning development from a medieval society to a leading economic and military power in Asia.
Sources: The Hindu, Wiki.
Chinese ex-FM to be AIIB chief
China has named its former Finance Minister, Jin Liqun, as its choice to head the Beijing-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), which is being seen as a rival to the U.S. and Europe-dominated banking institutions.
- Former Finance Minister Jin Liqun has been formally nominated by China as its preferred candidate to head the $100 billion AIIB. He is currently the secretary-general of the interim multilateral secretariat for establishing AIIB.
Why he was chosen?
Since, China has 26.06% share of the votes in AIIB it gives China veto power over the choice of the president, which requires a 75% majority.
What about the vice-president?
India by virtue of being the second largest shareholder may get the post of vice-president.
Sources: The Hindu.
India mulling proposal to join Eurasian Union
India is considering the option of signing a pact with the EEU, which has Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Armenia as members, and will see the inclusion of Tajikistan later this year.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ongoing visit to Russia and five Central Asian nations could expedite the feasibility studies under way to assess whether India should sign a free trade agreement (FTA) with the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU).
- For this purpose, a joint study group, headed by a Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Commerce, has been constituted and has been mandated to study the benefits of joining the trade bloc.
- An invitation to join the bloc was extended by Russia, and a joint statement for establishment of a joint study group between India and the EEU was signed when Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman visited Russia recently.
How India will be benefitted?
- India has to protect investment and trade from becoming imbalanced. It also has to ensure that its goods are not discriminated against. Hence, it is best for India to gain access to all important trade blocs.
- India is keen to enhance its ties with the Central Asian countries, which have huge oil and gas reserves and are an important link to Afghanistan.
- It will be an opportunity for improving trade ties as well as foster relations to check the menace of growing radicalization in the region.
About Eurasian Economic Union:
- The Eurasian Economic Union is an international organization for regional economic integration. It has international legal personality and is established by the Treaty on the Eurasian Economic Union.
- It provides for free movement of goods, services, capital and labor, pursues coordinated, harmonized and single policy in the sectors determined by the Treaty and international agreements within the Union.
- The Member-States of the Eurasian Economic Union are the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Belarus, the Republic of Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation.
- The Union was created to comprehensively upgrade, raise the competitiveness of and cooperation between the national economies, and to promote stable development in order to raise the living standards of the nations of the Member-States.
- The Supreme Council is the Union’s supreme authority. The Heads of the Member-States form the Supreme Council.
- The Intergovernmental Council is a Union’s body consisting of the Heads of the Member-States Governments.
- Eurasian Economic Commission is a permanent supranational regulatory body of the Union, with its members appointed by the Council of the Commission and the Board of the Commission. The core tasks of the Commission are fostering the conditions to support the operation and development of the Union, and drafting proposals in the field of economic integration within the Union.
- The Court of the Eurasian Economic Union is the court of justice of the Eurasian Economic Union, which ensures the uniform application of the EAEU Treaty and other Union treaties by the Union Member-States and bodies.
- The Eurasian Economic Union has an integrated single market of 176 million people and a gross domestic product of over 4 trillion U.S. dollars (PPP).
Sources: The Hindu, EEU.
Insights Secure Prelims 2015
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Consider the following statements regarding the Attorney General of India:
- He is appointed by the central government under Article 76(1) of the Indian Constitution.
- He must be a person qualified to be appointed as a Judge of the Supreme Court.
- He has the right to participate in the proceedings of the Parliament and vote.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?Correct
Explanation: He is appointed by the President of India under Article 76(1) of the Constitution and holds office during the pleasure of the President. The Attorney General has the right of audience in all Courts in India as well as the right to participate in the proceedings of the Parliament, though not to vote. He must be a person qualified to be appointed as a Judge of the Supreme Court.Incorrect
Explanation: He is appointed by the President of India under Article 76(1) of the Constitution and holds office during the pleasure of the President. The Attorney General has the right of audience in all Courts in India as well as the right to participate in the proceedings of the Parliament, though not to vote. He must be a person qualified to be appointed as a Judge of the Supreme Court.
The Member-States of the Eurasian Economic Union include:
- The Republic of Armenia
- The Republic of Kazakhstan.
Choose the correct answer using the codes given below:Correct
Explanation: The Member-States of the Eurasian Economic Union are the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Belarus, the Republic of Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation.Incorrect
Explanation: The Member-States of the Eurasian Economic Union are the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Belarus, the Republic of Kazakhstan and the Russian Federation.
With reference to UNESCO world heritage sites, consider the following statements:
- Both Cultural Properties and Natural Properties are eligible to be listed as World Heritage Sites.
- There are 32 World Heritage Properties in India.
- Japan is home to the greatest number of World Heritage Sites in the world.
Which of the above statements is/are correct?Correct
Explanation: Italy is home to the greatest number of World Heritage Sites with 50 sitesIncorrect
Explanation: Italy is home to the greatest number of World Heritage Sites with 50 sites